AUNE has several new student coordinators on campus this fall. If you see them in the hall or on the grounds, thank them for all that they do—and ask how you can help:
Courtney Conklin, a second-year master’s student in the Environmental Studies’ (ES) Science Teacher Certification concentration, is the new solid waste coordinator. She collects organic waste from the compost buckets (did you notice the shiny new ones?) around the building to put into the new compost bays, then eventually on to the AUNE garden. But her job is much more than that. Courtney plans to work with the Keene Middle School and other local schools on outreach through workshops and composting programs.
Feel free to use the buckets to toss your food waste–or even bring your own from home if you don’t have a composting option, Courtney says. She reminds everyone to read the signs — avoid dumping meat, dairy, and oil—and if you have any questions, email her at email@example.com.
As the new social justice and sustainability coordinator, Josh Lipkowitz, a first-year master’s student in the ES Conservation Biology concentration, will be working on a host of sustainability and social justice initiatives, such as advancing AUNE’s Climate Action Plan.
Josh runs a sustainable landscaping company and small homestead in Amherst, Massachusetts. He has worked in food, farming, and environmental justice in the United States and abroad since 2003. He wants to research the links between forests, farms, and biodiversity conservation.
Liz Strassman, a second-year student in the ES Science Teacher Certification concentration, and Gretchen Allen, a first-year Science Teacher cert student, are the two campus gardeners. Their job is to engage the AUNE community in becoming more sustainable by growing vegetables for Donna’s café and maintaining the rain garden to reduce the building’s environmental impact.
“We all know that eating local organic vegetables is an easy and delicious way to reduce one’s carbon footprint while keeping ecosystems healthy,” Liz said. “The rain garden does the important job of preventing polluted stormwater from surging into the Ashuelot each time there is a large rain event. The rain garden catches and holds that water, allowing it to slowly and naturally percolate into the ground, while cleaning it of any pollutants.”
Stay tuned – the coordinators will be asking you to get involved. Just say yes!